This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1907 edition. Excerpt: ...of as having any ghostly signification. As emblems they only express the joy of loving union, and the hope that the newly married couple may pass through life together as a pair of butterflies flit lightly through some pleasant garden,--now hovering upward, now downward, but never widely separating. II. A small selection of hokku on butterflies will help to illustrate Japanese interest in the aesthetic side of the subject. Some are pictures only,--tiny colour-sketches made with seventeen syllables; some are nothing more than pretty fancies, or graceful suggestions;--but the reader will find variety. Probably he will not care much for the verses in themselves. The taste for Japanese poetry of the epigrammatic sort is a taste that must be slowly acquired; and it is only by degrees, after patient study, that the possibilities of such composition can be fairly estimated. Hasty criticism has declared that to put forward any serious claim on behalf of seventeensyllable poems "would be absurd." But what, then, of Crashaw's famous line upon the miracle at the marriage feast in Cana?--Nympha pudica Deum vidit, et erubuit. "The modest nymph beheld her God, and blushed." (Or, Only fourteen syllables--and immortality. Now with seventeen Japanese syllables things quite as wonderful--indeed, much more wonderful--have been done, not once or twice, but probably a thousand times.... However, there is nothing wonderful in the following hokku, which have been selected for more than literary reasons:--Nugi-kakuru Haori sugata no Kocho kana! Like a haori being taken off--that is the shape of a butterfly7 in a more familiar rendering: "The modest water saw its God, and blushed.") In this line the double value of the word nympha--used by classical poets both in the...
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Patrick Lafcadio Hearn (27 June 1850 – 26 September 1904), known also by the Japanese name Koizumi Yakumo, was an international writer, known best for his books about Japan, especially his collections of Japanese legends and ghost stories. He was born in and named for the island of Lefkada, one of the Greek Ionian Islands. He worked as a reporter for the Cincinnati Daily Enquirer, working for the newspaper from 1872 to 1875. During the autumn of 1877, he left Cincinnati for New Orleans, where he lived for nearly a decade. In 1890, He went to Japan with a commission as a newspaper correspondent, which was quickly terminated. It was in Japan, however, that he found a home and his greatest inspiration.
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